RED January

The January blues are real aren’t they? How many of you find January a really tough month. I do for many reasons.

So this January I decided to try and help those blues by taking part in Run every day January… RED. An event set up by the charity Mind to get everyone out exercising every day. It’s a well known fact that it really helps with your mental health by lifting your mood.

What I couldn’t control however was getting ill. After only 5 days of RED I was too poorly to even get out of bed let alone run. I attempted to start it again but unfortunately for me it wasn’t to be. I was struck down again after just a few days back running.

I made the decision to give up RED which I didn’t find easy as it was one of my goals for the year which I had now failed. But I was putting too much pressure on myself to be out there everyday when I wasn’t well enough.

I know to a lot of people this may seem like it’s not a big deal but no one can predict the effects it will have on your mood. I was truly gutted to have not achieved my first goal of the year. I had signed up to a marathon that I was now unable to start training for and my 1000 miles for the year was off to a bad start.

It felt like all my goals were slipping away from me. I know they are not… I still have weeks/months to catch up but it has really knocked my confidence and my mood. It’s really hard watching everyone around you getting out there and enjoying their runs and doing some amazing stuff. It’s also hard knowing that my therapy has been to run and albeit it only a short period of time that I have been poorly it feels like the longest.

It’s not all bad….

I completed my run leader course so I can now help out at my running club. Obviously with so much time off of running so far I have taken it easy and helped support the beginners. I have enjoyed it so far and its given me reason to get out when I haven’t been able to do my own training.

I had signed Chris up to RED and he has made me proud. He is really enjoying running but I do try hard to reign him in sometimes. He has taken to it far more naturally than I ever did. He decided he wanted to run 20 miles so he did. Someone who a few years ago thought he would never be able to run due to being diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis (AS), a type of inflammatory arthritis.

He is going to blog his journey to ultra marathon running over on instagram if you’d like to follow him @rusty_runner

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I read an article comparing female runners to males when it comes to their confidence. It summed it up so well. Men do not have the same reserved approach to running like us women. They prefer to go out and push themselves with out fear of the consequences if things go wrong and they tend to not like following a plan… it’s as though they were writing about Chris!

Ellie has been running more since the colder weather has passed. We now have a “secret run club” which we do while Niamh is at her netball club. There isn’t really a secret to it but she tells me it’s secret because no one is allowed to know how fast we went… so please don’t tell her you can see it on strava lol!

She has a goal to work towards and I’m sure she will achieve it really soon.

Niamh my little ballerina got amazing results in her exam with another distinction under her belt. She’s not really enjoying running so for now I’m leaving her with all her other hobbies. I’m sure I can persuade her again one day.

My running club had a #runandtalk event planned to help raise awareness for mental health. I really didn’t want to miss out on the day as we had all been looking forward to it. So I decided to lead a walk with one of our injured runners. It worked out perfectly really as neither of us wanted to miss out. We then all grouped together to have coffee and cake. It was a lovely morning and I think we made the point about how running can really help with your mental health. It certainly helped mine.

I can not wait to get back out there and run. I’m really excited to try out my new trail trainers that I got with some birthday money.

I’m hoping to do a mix of trail and road running for my marathon training as the trails should help to strengthen my muscles, prevent injuries and best of all it’s a great space to help your mind. Running in open green spaces has proven to be more beneficial than running in built up areas so if you have the option you should try it.

When I’m back I’m going to prove to myself that this girl can.

Jaimee x

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